The Gauhati High Court Thursday asked the CBI to conduct a preliminary enquiry into certain charges of alleged corruption against former Arunachal Pradesh CM Nabam Tuki when he was the state PWD minister in 2006. Gauhati High Court Chief Justice Ajit Singh and Justice Manojit Bhuyan in their order asked the CBI to carry out a “preliminary enquiry, and in case the allegations are found having some substance warranting further proceeding with criminal prosecution, (it) may proceed in accordance with law.”
Thursday’s order came after the Gauhati High Court heard a PIL afresh after the Supreme Court asked it to do so in February. While the High Court had earlier ordered a CBI probe against Tuki on August 21, 2015, the apex court had stayed the same on August 26, 2015.
Tuki (53), who was Arunachal CM twice, from November 2011 to January 2016, and for four days in July 2016, is alleged to have influenced the state government to give some contractual works to his relatives as PWD minister. One Nabam Tagam had filed a PIL in the High Court in 2006 seeking a CBI probe against Tuki for allegedly awarding the contracts illegally, but he later withdrew his petition.
While the High Court slapped a fine of Rs 10,000 on Tagam and rejected his prayer, it directed registration of a suo motu writ petition in February 2010. On August 21, 2015, the court directed the CBI to register offences against Tuki under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988. It also asked the CBI to submit its report before the Special Court in Guwahati.
However, Tuki approached the Supreme Court saying he was denied a proper hearing. The apex court on February 6 set aside the High Court order of August 2015, but issued a direction that the case be decided afresh after giving the opportunity of hearing to all. On Thursday, the Gauhati High Court said its order was confined only to a “preliminary enquiry” and “not an investigation by the CBI.”